break away cable attachment

Mar 15, 2006
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Hi all

Just bought a new van only to find the brand new breakaway cables'attachment clip will not go through the "eye" bracket on my tow bar.

Ive heard you should just clip the cable onto the eye you must loop it through.

How do i fix this problem...can i clip a carabiner for example onto the towbar and then clip the breakaway through that ?

regards

Paul.
 
Mar 14, 2005
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Hi Paul

You don't say what type of towbar you have ie; is it a swan neck or a fixed ball type, either way if the eye is replaceable then fit a lager one, if not some are welded on, then fitting a carabiner is ok,to pass the cable through, make sure it is a good strong one and not from the
 
Mar 14, 2005
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You can replace the cable with the Alko one that has the carabiner type clip for direct attachment.

I clip mine on anyway as its job is to apply the brakes and then snap
 
Mar 14, 2005
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You can replace the cable with the Alko one that has the carabiner type clip for direct attachment.

I clip mine on anyway as its job is to apply the brakes and then snap
Be aware that if you use the ordinary snaphook in the way you say The hook will stretch long before the brake is applied,

If used in this manner and is the result of damage to third party vehicles your insurance will void.

The source of this info is NCC.

Jim M
 
Mar 14, 2005
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Paul,

I am pondering this possible problem having changed my car and having had a Witter tow bar fitted without the attachment for the breakaway cable - the fitter said the cable would pass through a round hole in the mount beside the tow ball. That looks to be a bit of a squeeze so I will have a ring (or eye)bolt, washers and nuts to fit in the said hole to hand when I go to collect the 'van next. I think a sturdy ring bolt will be safer than a carabiner or other sort of clip.

Mike E
 
Mar 15, 2006
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Hi Paul

You don't say what type of towbar you have ie; is it a swan neck or a fixed ball type, either way if the eye is replaceable then fit a lager one, if not some are welded on, then fitting a carabiner is ok,to pass the cable through, make sure it is a good strong one and not from the
 
Mar 14, 2005
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Paul,

I am pondering this possible problem having changed my car and having had a Witter tow bar fitted without the attachment for the breakaway cable - the fitter said the cable would pass through a round hole in the mount beside the tow ball. That looks to be a bit of a squeeze so I will have a ring (or eye)bolt, washers and nuts to fit in the said hole to hand when I go to collect the 'van next. I think a sturdy ring bolt will be safer than a carabiner or other sort of clip.

Mike E
Mike

There is an eye bracket that is made for this purpose it fitts behind the towball is L shaped with a slot to take the snaphook, You may need to have a longer bolt on the tow bar which holds on the ball, bolt
 
Jun 11, 2005
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Hi,

unlesss you have a detachable tow barr I thought that the Caravan Club recommened looping the cable around the towball itself.
 
Nov 1, 2005
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It's actually illegal, I understand, to wrap the cable around the towball unless there no other attachment point. The cable can easily slip over the towball, and there is always the possibility that the towball may in fact give way (although I've not heard of it). I wrap mine around the towing bracket which satisfies the law of having it attached within 4" of the towball. The law, like alot of towing law, is actually a bit vague.
 
Mar 14, 2005
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Thanks Jim M and apologies for giving you the opportunity to make the point

It seems odd to me that Alko for example continue to fit inferior clips when they have a carabiner type which is superior for not a lot more money

We traded in our Ace which I had carabiner equipped for a Senator Oklahoma at several thousand pounds only to find that I need to spend less than a fiver more for what seems an essential safety item.
 
Jun 11, 2005
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Hi,

if you log onto the CC website you can download a technical leaflet on'Attachment of braekaway cables'. Where an attachment point is NOT provided the CC recommend that you loop the cable around the towball, except for detachable towballs; in which case they recommend seeking manufacturers advice.
 
Mar 14, 2005
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Thanks Jim M and apologies for giving you the opportunity to make the point

It seems odd to me that Alko for example continue to fit inferior clips when they have a carabiner type which is superior for not a lot more money

We traded in our Ace which I had carabiner equipped for a Senator Oklahoma at several thousand pounds only to find that I need to spend less than a fiver more for what seems an essential safety item.
I would have kept the good cable & put a cheap one in it's place, Five min job.

Jim M
 
Mar 14, 2005
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Yes Jim I too have excellent hindsite.

I went to a large local dealer today and they could not understand that the normal breakaway cable would not do.

They had plenty of the clip type but the only carabiner type was on an Elddis in the showroom and that was badly bent sideways .

On the stand next to the breakaway cables were bolt on "eyes" for attachment of breakaway cable but in no way could the clip have been threaded through for looping before attachment.

Acts need to be got together somewhere.

A glazed look became apparent and Alko seemed to have no kudos.

They also had no knowledge of drop plates being only allowed if type approved !!!

If ignorance is bliss and you can shift the vans who cares .
 
Mar 14, 2005
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Yes Jim I too have excellent hindsite.

I went to a large local dealer today and they could not understand that the normal breakaway cable would not do.

They had plenty of the clip type but the only carabiner type was on an Elddis in the showroom and that was badly bent sideways .

On the stand next to the breakaway cables were bolt on "eyes" for attachment of breakaway cable but in no way could the clip have been threaded through for looping before attachment.

Acts need to be got together somewhere.

A glazed look became apparent and Alko seemed to have no kudos.

They also had no knowledge of drop plates being only allowed if type approved !!!

If ignorance is bliss and you can shift the vans who cares .
The carabiner type would have passed through the bolt on "eye" and could have been looped back on its self but the clip type which we are told should be clipped back on its self was designed so that the clip and ring that the cable attaches to were at right angles to one another thus making it neccesary to have a much bigger hole to thread through !!

Looping round the ball does not find favour with many people as they are concerned that if the ball came off then the breakaway cable would not work.

I think that as well as issuing directives the powers that be should really get to grips with some convenient design.

After all
 
Mar 14, 2005
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Yes Jim I too have excellent hindsite.

I went to a large local dealer today and they could not understand that the normal breakaway cable would not do.

They had plenty of the clip type but the only carabiner type was on an Elddis in the showroom and that was badly bent sideways .

On the stand next to the breakaway cables were bolt on "eyes" for attachment of breakaway cable but in no way could the clip have been threaded through for looping before attachment.

Acts need to be got together somewhere.

A glazed look became apparent and Alko seemed to have no kudos.

They also had no knowledge of drop plates being only allowed if type approved !!!

If ignorance is bliss and you can shift the vans who cares .
http://www.towsure.com/default.asp?t=6466

This makes interesting reading!!!
 
Mar 14, 2005
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The carabiner type would have passed through the bolt on "eye" and could have been looped back on its self but the clip type which we are told should be clipped back on its self was designed so that the clip and ring that the cable attaches to were at right angles to one another thus making it neccesary to have a much bigger hole to thread through !!

Looping round the ball does not find favour with many people as they are concerned that if the ball came off then the breakaway cable would not work.

I think that as well as issuing directives the powers that be should really get to grips with some convenient design.

After all
 
Mar 14, 2005
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"It is important to note, that AL-KO still recommends wherever possible, the breakaway cable is looped once around the towball and clipped back onto itself to form a noose."

This is what Alko say yet on the Towsure site it says that it is illegal to loop round the ball (I've never done this myself as prior to the friction hitch the cable got covered in grease)

It seems that a lot of clarification is needed within the industry.

Carabiner from B & Q
 
Mar 14, 2005
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Hi,

if you log onto the CC website you can download a technical leaflet on'Attachment of braekaway cables'. Where an attachment point is NOT provided the CC recommend that you loop the cable around the towball, except for detachable towballs; in which case they recommend seeking manufacturers advice.
And guess what the manufactures advice is........ BMW's advice is to loop round the detachable ball!. When I queried this with their technical section they answered "We have never had a report of a detachable ball dis-engaging whilst towing. So if you see a BMW that looks as though it should have a caravan on the back but hasn't.........could be me!!!
 
Apr 6, 2006
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My brother has an agricultural engineering business and he sold me a brilliant eye bolt that I bolted to the base plate of my towbar as I did not have a breakaway attachment. These are easily available and easy to fit.
 
Dec 12, 2005
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I bought a small 1 1/2" galvanised shackle from the local Ironmongers, which I fitted to the small hole in the Witter towbar I have fitted, The cable just passes through it then snaps back on itself.

Tankie
 

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